Red yeast rice, a type of fermented rice, has been used in traditional Chinese medicine for centuries due to its powerful health-promoting properties. It is produced by fermenting cooked rice kernels with Monascus purpureus, a species of the purplish-red Monascaceae mold. It also contains an active compound Monacolin K, has been proven to be effective in supporting healthy blood cholesterol and triglyceride levels, making it a popular and affordable natural alternative for cholesterol support. Here are 5 health benefits from taking red yeast rice.
1: Supports Heart Health
Red yeast rice is commonly used as a natural remedy to help lower cholesterol levels and support heart health. Most red yeast rice supplements have also highlighted its natural benefits; reducing levels of total and LDL (bad) cholesterol, as well as triglycerides and blood pressure. Additionally, monacolin K may also help improve endothelial function, which is key to maintaining vascular and heart health.
2: Helps Lower Risk of Metabolic Syndrome
Metabolic syndrome is a cluster of conditions that increase your risk for chronic conditions such as heart disease, diabetes, and stroke. Red yeast rice may help lower some of these risk factors and could be used as a natural treatment to aid in their prevention. Research shows that it can effectively reduce both total and LDL (bad) cholesterol levels. It may also reduce blood sugar, insulin levels, and systolic blood pressure.
3: Decreased Inflammation
Inflammation is thought to contribute to chronic conditions like diabetes, cancer, and heart disease. Supplementing with red yeast rice supplements may help reduce inflammation and support overall in the long term. For example, it has been shown to reduce levels of oxidative stress, a key cause of chronic inflammation.
4: Reduced Cancer Risk
Although current research is limited to animal and test-tube studies, some evidence suggests that red yeast rice may help reduce the growth and spread of cancer cells. One study found that giving mice with prostate cancer red yeast rice powder significantly decreased tumor volume compared with a control group.
5: Cost-Effective Alternative to Prescription Medications
Red yeast rice supplementation is a cost-effective alternative to pricey medications to help reduce cholesterol levels and support heart health. It contains active ingredients that are researched to help support healthy cholesterol levels while having fewer adverse side effects.